So I saw the iphone

And it was amazing... there are a couple other shots from macworld down there too...

san 1

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PS3 Madness

It sure has been interesting reading about the hysteria brought on by the launch of the PS3. People are acting like zombies or drug addicts or something. Waiting in line for days to give away your money (and plenty of it) simply to go home and sit down on a couch and stare at a TV for hours and hours (or days) seems to be something that I'm not sure I would look back on in my old age and be proud of that great accomplishment in life. I love video games too but this is just getting ridiculous don't you think? I've read reports of violence in lines and reports of people paying thousands of dollars for a PS3 and all sorts of other insane stories involving the PS3 insanity.

Is playing games in higher resolution worth all of this? What do people get out of it? Fun? This is your life people, does it not seem a little strange that hours and days of it are slipping you by spent in such a mindless state? I know that at times it can be a group thing but more often than not gaming as it is is something you do alone and no, I don't believe that playing people online constitutes being social with real people.
(which is a topic I could write a whole post on because the internet is like that too, gives the illusion of being social which is really interesting to me) Again, I will admit to being a gamer myself but there is a line being crossed here and I'm wondering how much further it will go.

I wonder how the Nintendo Wii will stack up on launch day. They seem to have a lot more units to go around thats for sure and I would much prefer one of them than a PS3 any day. It's not a 'fanboy' thing I just think that the new control ideas brought to the table create something much more engaging than your average lazy couch games. I can't wait to have a few controllers and a Wii with some multiplayer games, seems like it's something that everyone can enjoy which I like in games these days because it brings people together rather than secludes them in their bedrooms or couches. So at any rate, I think I've gone on long enough here for you guys to get my point, so all that said...

What do you think?

UPDATE: Wow, is littered with stories of PS3 related robberies, muggings and the like, engadget has a nice roundup of stories going... insane... link

New verison of Inquisitor avalable


I have been using a handy safari plug-in called Inquisitor since it's verison 1 release and I use it all the time. It's such a quick and easy way to search and get the top few results as well as have quick and easy access to other search sites all at once. Best of all it is now a free program so you have no excuse not to give it a shot. The developer is one of my favorite mac shareware developers and this great little mini add on comes with the ts seal of approval if that counts for anything!

Link to the software page

Why I get so irritated with the audio industry..

I have been lingering around the audio industry by proxy my whole life and in the past few years I have taken a more direct interest in the field and I love it to death. With this love comes an enormous amount of irritation with the industry in general. Something I should point out right off is just how huge it really is. I know that it is often overlooked, you go to a concert to see the band and 99 percent of the people there never think once about what went on or is going on to make them shine. Most people are happy enough simply seeing their favorite bands play live and rarely realize when things sound good or bad.

Also, there is a split down the middle of it that is not quite black and white to most people affiliated with the industry but I feel that there is a bigger line dividing the two fields than most people want to think. Recording studio engineers and live audio engineers I feel are different species of thought. The thought process for working in a studio is not totally different from working in a live environment but enough so that I can safely say that studio engineers should stay in the studio and live engineers should stay out in the field. Part of my feelings on this topic come from experience working with guest engineers and whatnot. I wont go naming names or getting into to much detail, I just wanted to put my opinion out there.

So at any rate, now that ive been exposed to the workings of the industry (more the live side of things than the recorded end) I cant help but be critical of its structure. It is really really really heavily influenced by the top companies in the field. Let me reword that, not the top companies as in the companies that are necessarily putting out the best products and innovations but the companies that spend the most money in strategic marketing. I guess that you could say that about every major industry in the world but to me it feels different when it comes to the audio industry simply because of it's not quite in the spotlight stance among the general public. The sad thing is that the biggest companies are making cheaper and cheaper crap because the men in suits at the top of the company food chain are looking to grow and grow. They are money makers not innovators and I think it is totally killing the industry as a whole. The same thing is happening in the recording industry with companies like M-Audio dumbing down and lowering the bar for acceptable quality sound everywhere.

Good sound is getting harder and harder to find these days and part of that is all of the miseducation flying around. There is so much BS you have to gig through before getting anywhere. The market leaders are paving the way to a future of bad audio and its scary. Maybe it's always been like this and I am only just now beginning to get it. You look at companies like Mackie which has become notorious for being super cheap crap and they have slyly started "The Coalition to End Bad Sound" which is hilarious to me. Then there are companies like Harmon (which is the Kraft Foods of the audio industry) and Shure which are putting out cheaper and cheaper junk every year but no one seems to be seeing this because they are so blinded by there pull in the industry as a while and even the "Pro" publications are pushing it because guess where most of their funding is coming from... Sorry, I forgot, not naming names here. It's just silly what kind of junk these guys are selling these days.

The sad part of it all is the rise in schools like Full Sail which are marketing zoo's. Seems like the physics behind good sound and the interesting nitty gritty are continually getting glossed over so as strange and backwards as it is the actual science behind good sound reproduction is lurking around in this murky grey area. It's a depressing fact that I am going to just have to live with but its a struggle being right in the middle of the field like I am because I have to deal with people constantly who are so blind to it all and are so hard to deal with because it's getting so everyones an expert these days.

I'm sure I have contradicted myself somewhere in all of this rambling mess but I just had to get some of it out of me. I know I have a lot to learn and am not at all gods gift to sound but I can say that it has been quite a bumpy road getting to know the ins and outs of the field and I can't wait to learn more and more.




As many of you may already know, Apple released the ability to play games on the video iPods yesterday and released 9 various games from a few different developers. They, in esence, created a new game platform which I think is absolutley brilliant on their part. It is something that seems to be getting overlooked for the most part (the gaming abilities that is) but I think it is a great addition to the players. Apple is setting themselves up once again just before the rush of the fourth quarter of the year begins and gives people even more of a reason to head the way of Apple for their computing.

Getting back to the subject at hand. Games on the iPod. I could not resist and as soon as the iTunes store was back up and running after its down time I picked out two games and downloaded them. After a brief bit of confusion caused by iTunes telling me that I needed a firmware upgrade on my iPod to run them and iTunes also telling me that my software was up to date I found that I just had to restart iTunes and then use the 'check for updates' menu item. My pod was then loaded with new gaming greatness and after adding them to my main menu on the iPod I clicked into Bejeweled and started flipping stones. I was amazed at just how well the thing ran the games. The graphis were smooth and rich for a screen and device so tiny. The controls were even easy to get around. I would have to say that they have a great idea here with slightly more advanced gaming now on the iPod. Being a closet gaming geek its nice to know that I dont have to look any further than my ipod for my 5 minute gaming fix here and there. Thanks Apple!



I know that I am just one of thousands of voices writing this on their blogs right this very moment but I thought I would jump in here and express my excitement over the upcoming Mac OS. After browsing through some of its new capabilities I find myself thinking the same thoughts I always seem to think when Apple releases new features into their OS, 'now these are features that are so well thought out and almost obvious in a way that once I start using them I will immediately start wondering how I ever got by without them.' You have got to hand it to them for molding such a great set of tools and making it all so seamless for its users.

I think that things that stick out in my mind with this release are the new Mail features which look really handy, the new iChat features which looks like a lot of fun not to mention a new version of front row and photobooth, and then there is the group calendars in iCal which I think will be really nice to have around, and you know... there isn't really anything new that doesn't look like it will be a great addition to my workflow. So that said, lets just say that I cant wait till spring!

So that said, I can't wait to get my hands on Leopard this coming spring.


P.S - I wonder how Longhorn is doing these days... poor Microsoft... Other than their current monopoly on most of the computers in the world they seem pretty washed up. Vista is looking as tired and bloated as ever...

P.S.S - If you follow that link to the Leopard preview page and you are using a mouse with scrolling capabilities or a newer mac laptop with two finger scrolling, put the cursor over the opening animation on the page and scroll up and down. It makes quicktime scrub through the video which is kind of fun in an "I'm a nerd" kind of a way.


The new kaos pad is out and it looks amazing, where can I place an order??





You simply must check out this cool looking new musical interface designed by the same mind that brought us Electroplankton. I can only hope this will become readily available in the us market because it looks like a lot of fun.



Midas XL8




This mixing board is heaven! I got the chance to see one of these in person recently and my jaw was on the floor. This thing is the new definition for what to look for in a digital mixing board. It has everything from 17 or so processors (ok ok, maybe just 7 but still!) giving it a supercomputer status to slick details such as touch sensitive knobs. The screens on it are all gorgeous and for a digital mixer it is really intuitive and it sounds amazing. I know this kind of thing does not really get covered in the tech web so I thought I would share my experience here. In my mind this is a geek sound guy like me's dream. I wonder if I will ever get to actually mix on one of these bad boys? Only time can tell eh?

So I heard a Hi-Fi...

On a recent trip to an apple store I had the chance to hear an Apple Hi-Fi and I now think that everyone is crazy that said that the Hi-Fi is a big speaker system. I thought it was relatively small. Not to much bigger than any other ipod stereo of that size and much much smaller than most small stereo systems. I could see there being more overall functionality to the device like rca inputs or video outs of some sort as well as a built in airport option for streaming music! why didn't they add that anyways?

So the most important thing really is the sound which I thought was good but not great. I thought that adding the treble boost in the EQ settings helped the overall sound quite a bit. The overall sound is on par with other systems on that high end level. I found that a lot of people complained that there was not a lot of high end response but I would beg to differ, although its not super crisp I found it more than adequate. One thing that i thought pretty drastically improved the hi end of things was to remove the front grill from the speakers which let it shine! The fabric they used was a bit to thick I suppose.

So what I think about the pricing. I think they aimed a big high on the price but I also think that they wanted to enter the market on that end. This way the other speaker makers couldnt complain to much because they still probably sell tons of systems to the people who don't want to shell out $350. It is a really solid feeling device though and I think worth the money if you are in the market for a new stereo and you have an ipod already.

Well at least thats my two cents anyways!


Any idea...

...where I can get my hand one one of these? Anyone?


UPDATE: answered my own question... link and link


So here we have it, Apple has taken a bit of a jump again and landed in the iPod accessory market and this time in a bigger way. The apple Hi-Fi is a speaker system that takes simplicity and pushes it to a new level. There has been many speaker systems come out to house the ipod music player, the first of which was by Altec-Lansing if I'm remembering correctly and who would have thought that the market for powered speaker systems based around the ipod would take off the way it did and end up with apple making their own.

At first look I thought to myself, eesh, what an ugly white box that thing is! It seemed so strange to see apple release something like this. As I had the chance to dig around a little and get some more info on the system I have found that it has grown on me. After I thought about it for a minute or two I came to remember this reaction to most of apples products in the past few years. The first time you see one you kind of stare at it trying to figure out what it is you are looking at but once you see them around in use or in person they suddenly make a lot more sense. If you think about it, this simplistic approach fits in perfectly with the recent popularity in minimalist interior design. Its a slick, un-intrusive box that does not distract from your living space. This first hit me when I saw some photos of the various little rooms that apple had set up to show the system off to the press. That was a brilliant move on there end. Take a look at these photos from iLounge. (they should really look into learning how to set the white balance on their camera!)

Although, placing the speaker like this goes against what they recommend as ideal placement, it does look nice there on a shelf, no?

Again, here you can see it set up along side a mac mini hooked up to a TV. It was this set up that gave me that envy in the back of my head and is starting to make me want one.

Im thinking that it's really not as big as it looks in the studio shots...

The deciding factor of course will be how this thing sounds. Many have said that they cant imagine why they are charging so much for it. The way I see it, the Hi-Fi has bigger drivers on the speakers than anything I have seen on these other speaker systems and the design of it does look pretty tight. I am anxious to see how well the high end of the frequency spectrum carries out without a dedicated horn of some sort to handle the job. Honestly I think that it is going to sound pretty damn good and I'm excited to see one for myself and see how far it can be pushed. I typically want a system that can be pushed really loud and hard without breaking up or loosing detail and we will just have to wait and see how the HI-Fi stacks up against other things that I am used to.



I love iTunes, it changed the way I listened to music. I have been using it since way back with version one with my first ipod. I wanted to take a minute and mention something about the latest couple of versions of the software which has introduced the ability to subscribe to podcasts.

(why cant these preferences be available to individual feeds?)

I know that podcasting came about before iTunes made for easy access to podcasts and easy subscribing and syncing to ipods. I love this new feature to death but I cant help but get aggravated with its shortcomings. Podcast's, as they grow in popularity, seem to becoming more and more notorious for their ability to eat up your hard drive space. There are a few podcast that I subscribe to that I would like to keep around for the long haul and preserve them as a collection but there are others that I don't really want to continue to eat up my hard disc space. I don't have enough as is. I find it aggravating that there you do not have the ability to create individual settings for each subscription you have, this way you could tell one podcast to only keep the last few of them on your drive or only ones that have not been watched or heard. I feel as though they only went half way with this feature and I hope to see them update this sometime in the future. I would also like to have the ability to backtrack on a subscription and re-download episodes that I may have deleted accidentally.

So anyways, just thought I would get my thoughts out there. If any of you mack users out there have any suggestions to get this working the way I would like it to, please, let me know!

Update: Well after browsing through TUAW a bit I find my answer staring me blankly in the face. Turns out there is a new addition to the newest version of iTunes that lets you stop certain podcasts from being automatically deleted. Well, this turned out to be an insightful post eh?


NAMM Day One

Well I spent the entire first day wandering around the show floor trying not to feel overwhelmed by it all but id just didnt seem to work out that way. It is simply amazing how many companies are represented here! I am thinking that tomorrow I will be having a bit more of a detailed look at a few things that I came across today. Today I got to check out the booths I wanted to visit the most and I hope to revisit some of them to get more time spent playing with the newest gear out there. Some early awards should be handed out would have to be the Harmon group for having the most smug little booth of the show, Roland had the most elaborate booth which seemed more like a small city, and well I think thats all for now. So many new toys but so little time. Lets take a peek into my day with a few photos shall we?

its funny, the more i travel looking to find interesting new places, the more i find that most of them are the same, only ever so slightly different.

transportation of the future! (or just a disneyland tram, believe what you want.)

the secret door that led to secret things that i cant tell you about because they made me sign a contract saying i wouldnt. (seriously though, i think they blackmailed me but im not sure.)

new roland portable recorder! the r-9. it seems a little too stripped down if you ask me what with its lack of any decent input options. when will someone get this right anyways? i hear marantz has a new one to that im looking to check out tomorrow. it was a pain getting by the hoard of sweetwater reps in their suits and snoody attitudes to see the thing.

check this out! a wood casing built for an imac at a guitar company showing off that they had custom options for their guitars.

ah blue mics are so odd yet i am so hooked on how cool they are. cant wit to get my hands on a snowball one of these days, they are pretty big! like the size of a softball!

and i couldnt get away without checking out the apple booth which was showing off logic and such and....

the new macbooks!! very nice.

if only i had the money for just one of these things all of my storage woes would be solved.

this is one of korgs newest offerings, seems like they are going after the m-audio trigger finger or the akai midi drum pad with this one, it seemed really nice and all but i still think that the trigger fingers pads are my favorite.

then there is this fun little synth that has some really wild industrial design. they had it set up with a kaos pad lying on a shelf that was beside the synth there.

more from the telex booth.

this place was chock full of rock stars!

the creepy creepy ceiling of the house of blues where i went for dinner and to be part of the exclusive telex after party thing.

complete with a few musicians.

including this all girl ac-dc band which just wasnt rocking hard enough in my opinion. 'A' for their effort though! they were working the audience like puppets.

Well kids its late and I need rest for day to so come back later to catch some more specifics on the show and things I come across. hopefully i will get a chance to play with more of the stuff around.

Taiko Drum Master!


Well I recently came across a new game that I have had my eye on for quite some time now and thanks to my shiny and tiny new PS2 I can now play this piece of gaming heaven. Those of you who might have been following along here on this weblog, I'm a sucker for video games that are fun and different than your average game. I like games that bring something new to the table and Taiko Drum Master does just that.

I know that this game has been available for quite some time now so it may be old news for many of you but I am just now getting my chance to play around with it so it's new to me and so I thought I would share my thoughts. The game is seemingly really simple at first glance. You might wonder how challenging hitting a drum to a song could really be and how could this possibly be worth my time. I guess you could compare this game to karaoke only rather than reading words to the song and singing along you are watching a flow of circles move towards a point at which you must hit the drum either on the main drum head or on the side of the drum. I'm not sure if I could express just how fun this game is in words and as far as a challenge is concerned, there are various difficulties to choose from and believe you me, they get really hard!

I rank this game right up there with my recent favorite games and would recommend anyone check this out if they have the opportunity to do so. I did some searching and unless you find the game for a good used price there is no good way to get a second Taiko controller for the game. There is one 3rd party manufacturer that has their own drum controller designed for the game at a pretty reasonable price and you can find that here if you are interested.





(he dances with his head and ears and has a lot of various colors that play along to music! i talked about this little guy in my new podcast)
| around the world


i have been using this site for a while now that makes it quick and easy to see where recent visitors to have been visiting from. its a site called and its a free service that uses google maps to map out where a websites recent visits originated. not as detailed as my standard statistics but more fun to check from time to time!

link to my map page


new mic


some of you may have gathered over time that i also like to do a bit of live sound engineering. i love being that close and trusted by the musicians that i have the opportunity to mix for. its so much fun to give bands the opportunity to sound the best that they can possibly sound. although i am relatively new to the technical side of things and im still getting my head around grabbing that frequency that is feeding back i think im getting the mix as a whole part down pretty good. i have been around the sound industry my entire live and ive been picking up things throughout that time. its been fun to learn about the field as ive been going along and i look forward to learning more in the future. i love the challenge behind mixing live audio, its great that i have had the opportunity to mix all sorts of different types of acts and learn the specifics of how to make a band really stand out live because every band can be so different. for instance, i rock band is totally different than mixing a jazz band or even a bluegrass band. they all have their own specific sound that they are used to and its my job to carry that out in the mix.

this area of work does have its ups and down but even the dark side of audio has its interesting bits. over the past few years ive had a chance to learn so much about the industry and how cut throat it is. its such an interesting field because there are so many misconceptions surrounding it and even from tech to tech you will find that there is a vast amount of urban legends and standards that have been set and are followed so militantly by some. sometimes it surprises me to find how stubborn people can be in this field. for instance, i have come to respect a simplified approach to live audio, within a mix and within the pa's set up. if you gather up a few really nice pieces of gear into a system then you can simplify the whole process and in most cases actually end up with a much tighter, warmer mix because your focus moves away from the typical overly complicated approach to live mixing and focuses on letting the band sound the way they really do. maybe im not making any sense with this and i would have to get in a lot more detail to make the point i am trying to make but i somehow got started with this little rant here and i thought i would follow through.

so anyways, i was posting here today to mention that i recently acquired a couple of amazing new mics that were engineered by blue and have been released by electro-voice. the mics i am referring to are the amazing new cardinal and raven mics. the cardinal i have a photo of above and as you can see it has an amazing and unique wooden enclose and yes, it sounds as good as it looks. as soon as i have the opportunity to record another podcast or two i am really looking forward to using it for that. i have used them at a couple of shows now and they have really stood out from the typical mics you see and hear. the cardinal is a wonderful condenser mic that would appear to be primarily a vocal mic but works wonders with other instruments as well. the raven is a dynamic mic that i have not used for vocals yet but would make for a great live vocal mic because of its tolerance to feedback. it has a really slick black metal body that is of a similar shape to the cardinal and from what i hear it is also a great all around mic and also has the benefit of not needing phantom power to use.

right, so this may seem a bit out of the blue here but i would like to start posting more about this side of my personal interests on the site. till next time then!


nice utility for safari


i came across this amazing little utility for safari called inquisitor. It essentially is an extension of the google search field and it adds some great functionality to that feature. when you type in the thing you want to search the fun begins, a menu pops down showing you the top search results for that subject and you simply click or use the arrow keys to scroll down to one of the links to jump to the page quickly. you can customize how many results are shown there. thats not all though. it will also list other possible spellings of the subject you are searching automaticly and allow you to quickly jump down and search on other sites aside from google. after a few days of using this im not sure if i could go back! its a really helpful little utility that i would defiantly check out!

it is also the first shareware app that i have seen sold like it is. there is an online demo that you can preview the way the application works which is pretty cool on its own but has limited functionality. here is the link to that page. to get the utility you must donate whatever you think its worth to the developer then he will send you a link to download the app. pretty cool approach in my opinion.

here is a link to the main site for the app where you can buy it.


what ever happened to originality in video games?

so what is happening to the video game industry? it has gone from a peaceful, fun past time for people and morphed into this giant life sucking force in peoples lives. not only are the majority of games today just rehashing old ideas over and over and over, just with prettier graphics (kinda) but this new breed of gamers seem to de destroying the essence of the past time and are turning it into this blood thirsty monster of a presence in the world today. dont get me wrong, i do love a game where you just run around and blow stuff up from time to time but it just gets so old so very fast you know?

(katamari damacy, why on earth has no one thought of this before? its such a simple concept but its something no one has thought of and its surprisingly fun)

i find it amazing that i have read real reports of muggings and people even being held at gun point to get ahold of this new xbox! i just dont get it! i was in target the other day and overheard people talking about how ****ng sick it is and how the graphics are just amazing and so i had a look see and found that i was really underwhelmed by what i saw. ive seen better looking, more interesting games on the supposed worst of the current generation of consoles, the gamecube. what has gotten into gamers these days?

im sure there must be some gamers out there that have been around pre playstation that know what im talking about. i remember when games used to be rated on originality as well as graphics, gameplay, and ll the rest. what ever happened to that? i so rarely find a game that i can get excited about these days and its kind of sad really. there are only a handful of games that were released in the past couple of years that i can remember actually holding any sort of originality or innovation in the way you might typically think of the way you play a game. i for one am thrilled about nintendo and their plans for the future. i love that they have chosen to take a stand for the roots of gaming and release something that is not intended to be in the middle of the xbox/sony war. im pretty excited that they have chosen to try something different for once.

(ok so maybe ive never seen someone riding down the street on a bicycle while shooting an uzi of some sort but come on... this is stretching it just a bit dont ya think? when will the line be drawn between originality and a desperate attempt at taking old ideas and pushing them to the far reaches of anything interesting just to make it seem like there is new things you can do in a game? "dude, in gta 7 you can totally possess the pig poice and use there bodies to kill everybody, its sick yo")

funny thing about nintendo is that they appear to be actually making money on there hardware unlike sony and microsoft which are, from what i understand, are actually taking a loss with their hardware sales. it just makes it all the more obvious that sony and microsoft are in it for control more than anything. ho hum... now that i think about it nintendo is kind of becoming the apple of the gaming world. right, so anyway...

i just wish that games would get out of this 'we have to be bad ass or we wont sell any games' here in the u.s. because i for one am getting tired of every game box being black and the lack of any color in the industry as a whole. lets just hope that the people that are still innovating continue to do so or we just may loose gaming to the violent hungry, lonely, underbelly of the gaming world.


itunes videos

many of you may have heard already that apple has sold over one million videos in their new video store. this got me thinking about the concept as a whole. while i think we are a long way off from seeing feature films in the store i think that selling tv shows is a brilliant approach to the whole idea. it just makes so much more sense than selling movies. i for one feel as though i would not want to sit there and watch a whole movie on any screen smaller than my laptop screen. i do however see the appeal of having a portable video device and i think tv shows are nice because they are easy to sit down and watch in one sitting on a smaller screen.

so that said i thought i would take a minute to bring up an idea that most other people seemed to have passed over in their discussions of the new ipod and the sale of tv shows on itunes. what kind of age demographic should they focus on with the type of tv shows available. i know that they have that one disney show on there and the pixar shorts but im wondering how many kids there will be running around with ipods with video playback watching their favorite shows on the school bus. i know that the ipod is quite the living accessory at the moment and im sure a fair share of younger kids have one in there pocket. is there going to be a market for this or will tv shows and content be steered towards adults exclusively?

im curious to see how the music store pans out as a whole and that includes the videos and the music. with the upcoming contract renewal in the coming year with the big record labels only time will tell what happens next year. all i know is that its going to be an important year for apple seeing as they are planing their big intel switch on top of all of these other new happenings...



an unexpected visit to an apple store yesterday gave val and i a chance to play around with a new imac with photobooth. its a really simple program but its so fun to play with! here are a couple photos from the mess around.




videos and such


so i grabbed a couple videos from the itunes music(video) store to see what all the fuss is about and it was pretty cool all in all. i can see the idea of being able to buy tv shows a wonderful and amazing approach to selling video online. i would love to be able to download my favorite episodes of shows because i dont really watch to much tv and the couple shows that i would give the time of day would be nice to access like this.

the only issue that could arise from this is the quality of the video. as many of you may have heard the resolution is intended to look really good on the new ipod. not playing full screen on 20 inch computer monitor. i will admit that although the video is a bit grainy/ blocky, especially in the darker areas of the video. but i think that these are not intended to be high resolution video downloads now are they? if i want a fancy copy of a tv show ill look for the dvd version. i really like the ability to have video media on my computer without having to carry around a bunch of dvds. i have a few dvds that i have converted into a quicktime format so i can watch them on the go. its pretty nice really. sometimes its nice to watch something in pristine quality and that has its time and place but on the go and being out and about its not really as much of a priority.

so i would recommend you head over and check it out. its worth a couple bucks for some of the pixar shorts and your favorite music videos. i cant wait to see how the tv side pans out. hopefully other networks will follow suit. personally im pulling for fox so i can get arrested development and family guy and simpsons, nbc for the new office which is growing on me, and cartoon network for adult swim. it certainly has a lot of potential but its too early in the game to make any accurate judgement on how well its all going to work out in the end. only time will tell.




i remember playing with this app a while ago but the tech demo ran out and it stopped running. i checked the site again recently and there was a new version available. not a final release but it is free and it is amazing and worth a look. it is essentially a way to look through your itunes content like you are browsing through records. i would love to see this built into itunes like a plug in of some sort. it will only be fun to play with if you have a good amount of your albums with cover art. as you flip through the album covers the animation is so fluid and amazing. you have to see it to believe it.

it is mac osx only and you can download it here.



well i think i need to start a new support group somehow. im going to call it AAA which stands for:

Apple Addicts Anonymous

what do you think? are there enough people out there with the same issues with this life altering disease? im thinking there must be. i couldnt be the only person out there sitting there franticly clicking the refresh button on my web browser for any scrap of news i could possibly get on the new apple announcements today. sure is fun though. its like a good suspense movie. there are a lot of strategic clues, many of which are there just to get you thinking in the wrong direction, and your mind races ahead of itself to try and figure out what will come next. you remember fuzzy undercover photos of mystery products, mysterious rumors crawling about, contradicting one another yet all hoping to be that golden ticket so they could be the ones that stand proudly after the dust settles and say, ha! i told you so!

then there is that moment when you nearly black out with anticipation as the new apple news is unveiled to the world and you get to take that big breath and stare and stare and drool (just a little, you know, in secret) and up creeps that smile and that satisfaction that you are looking at something that is just sooooo cool. then after you soak up the news you can start clicking away and finding out all the little details and really begin to form a decent opinion on the exciting new great thing there before you.

ok so thats all nice and dramatic but come on, im not alone here am i? is it not fun? you have to respect apple for being so brilliant with there delivery. there is just not another major company out there that is as slick with there approach to marketing their product. me being a graphic designer myself i can not help but look on with amazement as they manipulate the entire world with there beautiful products and there amazing approach to their marketing.

i should also mention here that i do get pretty aggravated by apple when i find out about a lot of their policies but i wont get into that here, i think ive gone on long enough.

imac ipod
(the new ipodgiant! this it to scale!!! kidding)

right. so here is, what all of the fuss was about around apple the past week or so. new ipods with video playback(!) new imacs with a built in camera(!) and some sort of new remote control for the imac that i havent read to much about yet. all in all it sounds like they have built quite solid updates for the ipod and imac. head over to for details.


sound studio


i have been using an app called felt tip sound studio for a couple of years now as a basic audio editor and of all of the other basic audio recording/editing software i have come across this has been by far the most stable piece of software available that i have used. i record hours of audio at a time when i record live music at shows with my powerbook and this program handles this task without hesitation. hell, i will be running abelton live and reason at the same time during live shows that i play with a friend of mine (a drop in silence) and i will have sound studio set up and recording our live set while im performing live using this high end software and it still performs flawlessly.

so i mention this because today the newest version of this app has been released (finally!) and i was somewhat surprised to see that freeverse software is the distributor with this release. i was equally surprised to see that this new version costs $80! it may be stable and a nice bit of solid software but ouch. i cant seem to find a demo version to try out either so it looks like i have a bit of a decision to make with this purchase. i think there is a discount for upgrading, ill have to see.

so anyone out there in the need of a really solid piece of software to record and edit audio then look no further than sound studio. heres a link.

oh, and whats with that terrible logo??


rapidweaver update!


hey there anyone that has followed this site knows that ive been using a wonderful web development app that is called rapidweaver. i thought i would post and mention that it has a new public beta out of a new version and it is very very very nice. this program just gets better and better and better so head over and check it out!!



battle of the pocket

it all started with my first ipod. ill admit it was a little bulky but it did fit in my pocket. i found out just how nice it was to have a device like this on the go, ready to pull out at any moment to pass some time, share some music, or to show it off to friends. (something owners of some sort of fun new gadget might not normally admit) this started what could be a never ending war for pocket real estate. one that is fought every morning when i decide which gadgets will get the luxury of spending the day hanging out in my pocket.

the most recent addition to the pocket family is my new gameboy micro. a very very nice little gadget that is nice for passing a few minutes here and there. as i mentioned a post or two back i do love a good game here and there. the game boy is, to me, the last platform that is still surviving that houses some really great traditional style games that are just so fun. it also lends to some nice newer style games as well. in other words, nothing to fancy. just good gaming fun. the micro itself is a very cool toy, and unlike many reviews i have seen, is built pretty solidly. the psp is to bulky to be truly portable (pocket size) and its cute and all with its multimedia functions but it just does not seem worth 250 dollars to me. this and these new generation games are just sooooo expensive. but anyways, didnt post to write about that.

it just seems so interesting how there are all of these various gadgets being released that are all fighting to take that place in your pocket. things such as the ipod shuffle and palms with belt packs and the such seem to try and give a way to carry your toys without having to clutter up that space. so lets get down to it, what does john of have in his pockets right now? well in the left front pocket ive got my nano (its just soooo tiny!) and my new micro which feels good in my pocket. i easily forget i have anything in that pocket! in my right pocket i have a little leatherman pocket knife/ pliers (the mini kind), an extra game or two, loose change and some headphones. i have a slim little wallet in my back pocket and thats it! my cell phone kind of floats around where i am and sometimes gets thrown in my back pocket or just on a desk wherever i might be which has lead to it getting lost here and there but its nothing fancy so im not to controlling of it.

so now ive shared, lets hear what you readers have tucked away in your pockets, the comments must be good for something right?

ill post a photo here tomorrow if i remember to with my little collection of stuff.


revenge of the little red plumber


since when are video games so bad ass? at what point they they stop being original and fun and start focusing on these boring concepts? i just dont get it. i was in a game store today to grab a new gameboy micro and i overheard a guy talking to his girlfriend about this game being for little kids or that game being for _____ies. so what is the deal? these new games are sooo easy! im not seeing much skill in running around stealing cars and shooting people. i could see the entertainment value of this for oh 5 minutes or so but where is the challenge? its funny to me that video games used to be for dorks, nerds and other such non threatening forms of the human species. it has slowly transformed into this industry full of people looking for nothing more than to blow stuff up, kill things, and well, kill things. its really dumbed down a good bit in a way.

this is why i dont like these new systems as much, especially the x-box. there just is not that wide of a range of games available for it. it seems like the idea of being a harcore gamer has transformed from one who is really into games and playes them all the time to one who is into these bad ass killing games. i dunno. maybe im just looking at it from the wrong point of view. this is the whole reason i like nintendo so much. there games are actually pretty fun. i am really getting into these games that are made for multiple players at once. i am really excited about the new revolution console that nintendo is putting out. i cant wait to mess around with the new motion sensitive controller they are using with it!

so anyway just thought i would comment on the state of gaming today. i just hope that the xbox/ rockstar overlords dont end up destroying gaming as i once knew it...


the countdown begins...


i am eagerly awaiting october twelfth because apple is all set to have one of there little out of the blue press events and who knows what kind of new toys we will see. i for one can not wait to see what they have up their sleeve. will it be this elusive video ipod?? i would say maybe but if that were true than this image most likely would not be still allowed to be floating around the internet seeing as apples lawyers are known for being pretty tight about leaks. any ideas on what might be next??



warner's comon sense, or lack there of...

so the wonder of having this personal weblog leaves me with the wonderful ability to stop being professional and say whatever i want. its a nice freedom to have. so that said...

what the hell is wrong with warner music? for those of you who may not be up on the latest happenings with their unrest with the iTunes music store ill fill you in briefly. over the past couple of weeks they have let it be known that they are no longer happy with the 99 cent per song model that has made the iTunes music store so very popular. They have decided that they want to charge more and less than that for songs stating that "all songs are not created equal," whatever thats supposed to mean. first off, yes, all songs are created equal. what has happened to music that has made it turn into such a lifeless thing? i dont get it. i think that is is amazing what the iTunes store has accomplished! there has been so much new interest in music that would not have normally been had otherwise. you see a little indie group stuck right up next to these robot bands and its such a nice thing to see. if you really did deep into the store you will find some really amazing music hiding away and this form of distribution is simply the future of music and the major record labels just need to realize this.

i remember years and years ago when i was younger and hanging out with a friend of mine he was telling me about how he heard that in the future you wont go to a record store to buy cds or tapes. you will take in this little chip thats a tiny little device that you plug your headphones into and pay to get it filled up with the music you want. i thought that this was just the craziest sounding thing i had ever thought of. "how cool would that be," i thought. boy was i amazed when i opened the box to my first ipod! i bought it just days after they were released, even among all of the people that were positive that no one would ever buy the things. it was soooo cool! the whole idea of the future coming into the present really started to settle in when i first held a shuffle in my hand. i had immediately thought to myself that this must be what they were talking about years and years ago. so off i went to buy digital music and fill up this little 'chip' with music. i remember having a conversation with my dad recently about how when he was growing up it was flying cars that people spoke of when they talked about the future and he was all excited about flying cars. he mentioned that it was no fair that the future that i had imagined when i was younger is coming true but the future he had imagined has yet to show face.

so back to the topic at hand, the whole world of digital music and its presence in the world today. it was pretty amazing when, after the whole napster fiasco, all of the major record labels decided to take part in this whole iTunes experiment. i was pretty surprised at first to tell you the truth but look at it now. it has grown to be this enormous thing. its amazing really. i didnt really mean to get into this here in this write up so let me get back on track here. as i mentioned before warner music has been the first label to decide that they were unhappy with the current iTunes model. they spoke out and apple spoke back recently calling the labels "greedy" which i find oh to painfully true. warner music stated that they believe that they want to start charging more for the new hot songs. after apples response it appears that warner has decided to pull out all of the stops and be a true ass and state that they are willing to pull out all together if apple does not cooperate. do they have any idea what they are doing? there is this amazing new form of music distribution that costs them nothing to utilize. there are no manufacturing costs here. how could they possibly think they are loosing on this deal? the whole medium has taken off, exploded and rained down upon the dried up world which has soaked it up and loved it! it has re invented the whole idea of an impulse buy all together. it makes it so easy to, when you want a song, to simply hop online do a quick search and click on a button to buy it. i think its going to continue to grow if it continues to get support and hopefully one day will open its arms to musicians that arent on record labels to sell their music on the store.

how could they possibly think cutting off apple could be a good idea? heres their most recent logic. they figure that because apple wont let them raise the price of songs then apple is hindering their ability to make the amount of profit they are used to making because people usually have to buy a whole album but now they are just buying single songs therefore they are loosing money. but thats not the funny part. turns out, they have decided that the reason apples ipod is so popular is because they have been marketing it along with the idea of the iTunes music store being the best way to fill it and because the iTunes music store is driven by its content (warner's music) then they should be getting a cut of the ipod sales because of this... yes, it is confusing and yes, it is stupid and desperate. what a sad attempt at shaking apple up.

“What if Jobs says 39 cents or 29 cents per download—what then?." yes, a warner rep actually said this. in all honesty and sincerity they actually think apple would ever do this? you call that an argument? they think that stands as a valad point??? come on! so on to the next golden quote: “The industry can say, OK we’ll cut him off—very few people people buy music from digital downloads.” very few people? hmmmm. if it appeals to such a few amount of people then why are they so worried about it??? 500 million songs is not exactly a drop in the bucket and that number is rising. heres a kicker, “[Jobs] will figure out another model." man, these guys really are off their rocker. its funny that they go along with all of this in the first place but once they discover that its actually working so they want a bigger piece of the pie. do they not realize that it would be insanely easy for people to just turn back to file sharing? there will always be a way for people to do this. always. it is silly to think that it will be stopped completely. and one last quote here: “The industry got together and said ‘We don’t want another MTV’. Well, now we’ve got another MTV, in Apple. And we have to deal with it." turns out they think apple has to much of a dominance over this form of distribution (but not at all in the same way they have such a dominance over the music industry right? and to compaire them to mtv? there is just nothing to say to that sad little comment. how could anyone in their right mind not look at this company and see just how sad it really is here.

i can only hope that the other labels dont stand up and decide they want to take this same mind set. as you may notice, none of them have... lets say they do pull out. i think iTunes would survive. just on a different level. they would continue on. there are a lot of other labels with a lot of great music on there and at the moment it is just the best overall solution to the problem of the whole music sharing era.

these guys need to wake up and realize that iTunes simply has the best model for digital music at the moment. if you look at the subscription services and compare them to iTunes you will find that iTunes has the upper hand for an obvious reason. when someone goes to a file sharing network, a lot of the time they are just looking to go grab a quick song that they wanted to hear and occasionally an album. its a collection that they own and this aesthetic is still there with the iTunes store. the whole virtual ownership of the subscription models is so silly and i could see how that might work for some people but overall its just not that solid of a model simply because once you stop your subscription, you no longer own your music. you are lect with nothing.

so warner, get your head out of your ___ and realize that this new digital distribution thing is working really well and to try and change it and shake things up like this at this point in time when it is just now gaining a whole lot of momentum is just crazy talk. i think that they are just pulling these little scare tactics to try and get more out of apple but maybe they have not been paying any attention to apple, maybe they dont realize just how stubborn they are. jobs isnt going to back down and so warner is not only making a mistake here, they are looking really really bad in the process. in fact, a lot of companies are doing this kind of thing when it comes to apple. every time a new ipod is released the rest of the industry wines and wines about how stupid it is and they have a product that blows it away. the simple fact of the matter is that the rest of the industry is sooooo over crowded with players that no one knows what other players are worth anything. no one can even remember the names of them (rdsfr-200, or zse 74 super duper player) more or less trust that they are up to par as far as quality is concerned. all of these little bells and whistles on other players are cheep add ons to make these products seem like they do more but it just bogs down the players and clutters the simplicity that needs to be present in them. the ipods simplicity is one of its strong points and its brilliant really, they have let third party developers make the add ons people want for it weather that be fm radio or voice recording. it saves them money and it lets people choose what they want to add to there player rather than cluttering up the device. the ipod accessories market is huge! it seems like its bigger than the windows service and support market which is a pretty impressive feat!

ok i have gotten way off my topic here, sorry about that. i guess only time will tell what will happen in the end. sure makes for a fun ride in the meantime though...




i have been meaning to post about this for a while now because i am very exited about it. i get quite a few people asking about how i update the site, what kind of software im using, this and that. well i designed a template for this amazing program called rapidweaver that uses ccs to make it easy as easy can be to update a website. there are a whole bunch of default themes available but as you can see you can make your own with some basic knowledge of cascading style sheets an an idea. this software turned my website into what it is today and allowed me to stop spending so much time making new pages and linking everything together. it makes it so very easy for me to update which lets me focus on the content of the site more so than the coding and all that.

so the reason that i am posting all of this is to mention that there is a new version that is coming out soon that looks amazing! i am very exited to get my hands on this great looking update to this already wonderful software. if there is anyone out there that is looking for some easy to use software that is secretly very powerful if you dig into it i would suggest you check this out! the new version comes out in early october.

here is a link to the product info page.


digital vs. digital painting

Over the last few weeks i have come across a couple of painting / illustration programs for mac os x. (one of which is also available for windows) i think they are both a lot of fun to tinker around with and i thought i would share.

• the first is one i came across today actually, its called pixen and it is donationware that is made for creating pixel art. it features a relly nice, simple interface and reminds me of way way back when i first started getting into using a computer to draw when i was a wee little version of john. (kid pix was the best!) check it out here.

• the other app is a program that is reminiscent of the painter series that corel bought a couple years back and its called ArtRage. this is a really amazing program considering it is absolutely free. its very simple and you can get some really nice looking illustrations using this app. this app is available for both mac and windows and its free so you really have no good excuse not to try it out! its a lot of fun for anyone that loves to doodle so check it out! heres a link.


of bloated docks


if your running mac osx and love to use all kinds of fun little apps to make your computer life more interesting im sure you know of the dock space epidemic that can sneak up and take over your dock. there are all of those apps that do get used from time to time but dont get that everyday use that your core apps do. im sure you know what i mean. well i have tried all sorts of various little dock management apps, ones that add more docks, ones that stuff a bunch of stuff into one icon, and ones that are entirely new forms of the whole idea behind the dock in the first place. well i have finally come across one that i am really happy with and its called overflow. its a really simple utility that lives in your dock that launches a second bank of shortcuts to other apps and files that you may use from time to time but dont want cluttering your dock in their downtime. it is just the most simple approach to dock management that i have come across and thought i would recommend it to those of you who may be in the same position as me. the closest utility to this one that i have used is called drag thing and its cute and all but it feels bloated to me. i am all about the most simplistic approach i can find as far as using a computer is concerned and overflow is just that, simple.

here is a link to the product page where you can grab a demo copy and check it out for yourself.


more on the digital revolution

so i just read that the newest stop motion film by tim burton called the corpse bride (that comes out this weekend!) did not use film to film the movie. it used canon digital slr's to shoot each frame! its obviously the first widely released movie that used this technique in filming. they simply took the photos into final cut pro to edit the footage. its such a simple concept at heart and it would have been so much more elaborate and expensive to use film for this. it probably gave them a lot of flexibility and a really smooth and quick way to get the footage down and editable almost immediately. i wonder how many photos are in the movie? im sure this info will come out as the movie is released and people start to wonder such things but it seemed pretty cool to me that this is how the whole movie was shot. just another testament to the digital revolution.

also i should note that there is a really great comment on the post about digital photography that you should check out if you have any interest in the subject. it takes the whole idea of new technology rising up and causing a clash of new and old and applies it to other things and if you think about it you can see that this is how it has been since even the first cameras came into existence. anyways, check out the comments for more on that and leave your thoughts as well!


new ipod earbud holder

hey check this out. after all that ranting about the ipod earbuds busting and me wanting a decent way to store them along comes this amazing little carrying case for them!


this company also makes a really nice product for ipods called the pocket dock which is the best way to get a line out on your ipod with out lugging around a full sized dock!


digital cameras and the evolution of the photograph

are digital cameras slowly taking over photography as i once knew it? i remember taking classes on photography not to terribly long ago and we learned the ins and outs of taking photos and developing them in a darkroom. i remember the smell of the chemicals on my hands and the anticipation that would swell up as i got closer and closer to the moment when i finally got to lay my eyes on the photos that i had waited so patiently to see. there was a lot of emphasis on learning how to expose images correctly and taking the time to develop a good sense of composition. these staples of good photography are still taught today but it seems as thought they may be getting pushed aside to automatic camera exposures (which are getting smarter and smarter all the time) and classes on photoshop and printing your photos well on an ink jet printer. as i started getting more serious about photography i remember digital cameras being this crazy up and coming technology but any real photographer you might talk to would immediately dismiss the idea stating that digital photography will never replace real film. and to some degree it might never get to that point but it seems to be getting pretty close.

compare 1
(this was the original photo i had taken for a desktop image on this site. i was kind of rushed as i took it because of circumstances beyond my control and the little things would not stay still long enough to snap a nice clear photo so this original image was composed a little sloppily and the exposure was a bit off...)

i should mention now that my family owned one of the early digital cameras on the market and it was made by apple computer. i still think we have it around somewhere. it was nice being able to take photos and store them on the computer but at the time that was about all it was really good for. the image quality really was pretty lousy and this new world of digital photography could not even begin to touch a traditional photograph. not even our second generation digital camera made by kodak (which does not even make film cameras anymore!), as impressive as it was at its full resolution could not compare.

as time passed i continued to use my film camera and my drawer full of photos kept piling up full of photographic experiments and the like and i began to notice a debate start to take place in the world of photography. the world of digital imaging had begun to lay claim of more and more and more photographic work. photoshop was starting to become more of a household name and it seemed as though anything was possible in photography because you could scan in your photos and alter them to your hears delight. more traditional photographers seemed to become more and more critical about the up and rising ability to go in and fix any amount of the traditional elements of photography that was once only accessible by those who had experience in the darkroom. this new digital darkroom had begun to take over.

compare 2
(... but a simple bit of photoshopping can go a long way. this image was transformed into a nice desktop image just by giving the jelly fish some breathing room so it would be more functional as a desktop image)

but the debate didnt end there. to my surprise, i started to read articles that spoke of digital cameras that had begun to match the image quality you could get from a film camera. this seemed to raise question of how long it would be until we would see digital cameras out in the field in place of film cameras. i personally was really exited at the idea of taking all of the photos i wanted and not having to shell out money on developing costs. this and i would be able to automatically see my exposures, make adjustments, and re-shoot, therefore cutting some of that anxiety caused by that waiting period between taking a photo and developing it and hoping that it came out the way i envisioned as i tool the photo. the ability to see a photo directly after it is taken is the reason i decided to write this little article and ill get to that in a second. this whole debate slowly morphed into acceptance of this new digital world and although there are still purists out there it would seem that the vast majority of photo journalists out there today are now using digital SLR's. that whole transition seems to have snuck in there so seamlessly that a lot of people havnt thought twice about this new world of photography. in fact, it would seem that this has bread a whole new slew of would be photographers that have jumped onto the digital revolution of photography like there was never any such thing as film or a darkroom. sometime that seems really strange to me.


getting to the point of all of this... i have realized recently that a lot of photographers have developed a reliance on the little lcd screens on the back of every single digital camera. it would appear as though it has changed the way photography is handled completely. i now notice that every time i see a photographer take a photograph you can immediately tell if he or she is shooting digital. there is always that little pause now to look at the back of the camera and then there is that look on the face of the photographer that means either its a keeper or its one that will cause that second pause and the reach around to delete the photo and forget it was ever there. there are all sorts of levels of these kind of photographers. there are those with a pretty modest set up and those with huge elaborate remote flashes and fancy add ons. its like hot rodding their camera. i myself would like a new lens a battery pack and a decent flash but thats beside the point. do you know what i mean about this whole digital camera epidemic? are photographers loosing touch with the roots of the art form or are we simply using the tools available to us as means to push the boundaries of what is possible with a photograph? does using a computer as a tool in photography cheapen the over all art? i am inclined to be much more sympathetic to this new approach to photography.

i was trained traditionally in photography on the eve of these huge changes in the field and i have seen the ups and downs of both approaches and find that there is no real winner here. i have been using photoshop and been thoroughly addicted since version 3 before layers existed (man did layers change the game or what?? remember making something as simple as a drop shadow in version 3??) and i can admit to my love of the ability to make little changes to images at times. this said i also love the challenge to get an exposure dead on the first time and get a really striking image with out using photoshop as a crutch. nothing feels better than that kind of moment. so that said i can totally respect a photographer that has a strictly analogue approach but i can also see the endless possibilities of using the new tools in this digital age of photography to push the art up above and beyond what was previously thought possible. its amazing really that there has been this total upheaval within the art of photography and all within the past five years or so. i could go on longer and into more specific detail about my experiences with these two ever changing and interlocking worlds of photography but its late and i think ive gone on long enough for now. so until next time....

p.s- leave a comment and let me know your thoughts on the matter!



i was thinking about the fact that i can not ever remember reading much of anything about the white earbud headphones that come with every ipod. you can find review after review about the player itself but no one ever mentions the headphones that come with it. ok, maybe i have read about how people are annoyed that there new black nano comes with white earbuds or maybe little reviews on replacement headphones to replace the commonly underrated earbuds that come with the ipod in the first place. so i thought i might take a minute to talk about the ipods default headphones.


as i mentioned, it seems as though reviewers ignore the existence of them and i could guess that could be linked to a couple of things such as the fact that apple has only made ever so tiny adjustments to the headphones over the years. after there first mistake of making them to big to fit into most ears the earbuds themselves seem to have stayed pretty much the same. the most significant change in them would have to be the addition of the little piece of plastic that you can use to hold the two loose ends of the earbuds together which results in less of a tangled mess after being in your pocket. this and the point of connection where the 1/8" jack is there has been a couple of minor changes in the style of plastic end.

over all i really like the sound and feel of the simple white earbuds. it kind of weird me out to have earbuds that stick down into my ear, which i will talk about in a moment, so i like the way they sit in my ear. they are pretty well responsive sounding headphones all in all. people seem to mistake lots of bass with good rich sound but i find that that is simply not true. the apple earbuds seem to cary plenty on the low end for being what they are. i think that overall you cant go wrong with the sound of them. it is crisp and well rounded and i believe under rated in most cases. if you want a pair of headphones with a nice kick in the low end then i would suggest you check out the offerings over at bose. mainly their tri-port headphones. (they are built terribly and break all to easily but damn do they sound good.) please step up and prove me otherwise if you think im wrong.

now i should get to my big problem with these things. yes, although it may seem like i have nothing but good to say i do have some issues with these things and the main issue being that none of them ever seem to last me all to long. i find that the thin metal screen over the speaker is the cause of all of my issues. whenever i have them in my pocket they get all crammed against each other and other things in my pocket and this causes the thin metal shield to get dented and this causes it to press against the speaker and cause a nasty static sound when i try and get any volume out of the things. i have returned at least three pairs of these and finally gave up and started using my duck taped tri-ports for everything.


when i picked up m nano i realized that i now had a fresh pair of the little white earbuds and i immediately wondered if there was any good way to save them from getting mangled like my other pairs of them and i found a few various compromises. one would be to buy a little earbud carrier for them. there are a couple on the market specifically for the ipod earbuds but i just wasnt that satisfied with any of the ones that i had found. i did come across one cool product in my searches which i did buy and absolutely love and that is a handy little cable wrap for headphones. here is a link for that amazing little accessory.

the product i ended up choosing was a bit of a shot in the dark but they were cheep and the most simple solution for my problem. that would be griffins ear jams. as stated before i really dont like headphones that i have to cram deep into my ear and i will admit that the ear jams are not an exception. they really arent all that comfy and they look pretty goofy sticking out of your ear because they do add a bit of extra bulk to the earbuds. they are supposed to boost the bass but all they really do is make the sound muddier. all that aside i bought them for one reason and one reason only and that was to cover the face of my earbuds so they would not get mangled as they have in the past and for that they do a great job! i am going to see if i can get used to cramming them into my ear but i think i will end up simply using them as a cover for my earbuds and snapping them off when i use them. seems like a pretty simple solution and i look forward to spending a bit more time with them.



i believe thats all for my take on the apple earbuds situation. hopefully what ive said here will save others a bit of a headache in the future. till next time then...


my nano aka. peh jr.

as everyone most likely knows there has been a new ipod unleashed upon the world and i am here to tell you, it is amazing. i had the opportunity to pick one up this past weekend and it met and surpassed all expectations.


as i opened the as always slick packaging for the ipod i didnt even realize that the ipod was real sitting there mounted inside the fold of the box, at first glance i honestly thought it was a printed image of the ipod there and the actual device was further inside the box but i soon realized that that tiny little thing was actually the player! this thing is the perfect size for a portable audio player. its just big enough to fit comfortably in your hand but its still so unbelievably small that it makes for the perfect personal traveling companion. it tucks away anywhere you want it to go and its very easy to forget that its even there. is so hard to describe just how cool this little thing is. as light and thin as it it is it is hard to believe that its as sturdy as it is. it feels like you could snap it in half but having the solid stainless steel back on it makes it very solid.

(here is a pretty good size comparison.)

moving along here, lets talk about the display. it is smaller than past ipods, a good half an inch smaller but dont let this turn you off. i cant help but use the word amazing a lot in this review, and look out because here comes another. it amazes me how good this little display looks. its hard to believe this display that is so vibrant and colorful is set into a player this thin. it seems like some sort of illusion. this would be a good time to talk about the use of a nice little color screen on an ipod. i went from an older third gen ipod with a grey scale screen to this one and within two days of using the nano its strange to go back to my older player. i really like having the ability to see the album artwork on the ipod. it would be kind of cool if i could browse my music on the ipod by looking through the album covers and playing an album from there. the other thing i like about the color screen is being able to look at photos from the ipod. its a pretty nice function in my opinion. the album art is especially nice when i am listening to an enhanced podcast such as one of my favorites, kyoto podcast. the images change as you listen to the podcast and its handy to see what it is the podcast host is referring to as you listen to it. before my nano came along i had to be at my laptop to see the enhanced content. i have my nano set up to sync my last imported batch of photos with my nano photos which is a pretty handy way to check out my latest photos and share them on the go. it would be good to note that you can not offload photos directly from your camera to this verison of the ipod and i dont believe you can display the photos on a tv with this version but all in all its still a pretty useful and fun feature.

(the album art can also be displayed on its own by cycling through the menu as a file is playing using the main select button in the middle of the wheel.)

ive come up with a pretty handy idea for any international travelers out there that have a color ipod such as the nano. any important things you may need traveling such as a toilet, water, medicine, or other such necessities could easily be photographed and uploaded to the ipod along with the written word of the photo in both english and whatever language the country you are visiting may use saved as a jpg. then when you may need a hand getting over that language barrier you could simply search through your photos, find a picture of whatever you may need and show that to whomever you mihgt be asking for help. seems like a good idea to me anyways.

so lets see, what else could i cover here. i wanted to mention that, as i mentioned before, i do have an older third gen fifteen gig ipod and i still plan to use it. i see my nano as my player for my personal favorite albums of the moment as well as a place to store and listen to the various podcasts i enjoy. my older ipod will still act as a way to carry other favorites and music that i might need here and there while i am out an about that i dont necessarily listen to all of the time. i have somewhere in the range of a hundred gigs worth of music on an external drive and so i cant cary all of my music with me all of the time but my other ipod does act as a nice collection of some of my favorites. all in all the nano and my older ipod seems like a pretty good combo to me. i have always liked the ability to sync my phone numbers, calendar, notes/ directions on my ipod and the nano pulls off this function flawlessly. there are a couple of other little things thrown in like a screen lock function that i think is more cute than useful and a stop watch/ lap timer that saves your lap times for you joggers out there. all in all i really have nothing at all bad to say about this player. it seems like reviewers such as the ipodlounge have this really stupid tendency to try as hard as they possibly can to find something they dont like about every single product they review simply to give off the illusion that they are reporting the unbiased opinion. that said it seems like even these types of reviewers are having a really hard time finding things wrong with this player. its just that cool.

(the pocket the nano is in is the one that i used to store my headphones in. turns out that it makes for a nice place to store my older ipods younger brother.)

well i think i have mentioned everything i wanted to about this new toy of mine. i would highly recommend one of these amazing little players to anyone in the market for a new portable music player. there are also black versions of them which i have yet to see one in person but i hear they are pretty nice and also hear that they are outselling the white ones by a good amount.

do you have an ipod nano? have you seen one and want one? leave a comment to tell the world what you think of these fun little gadgets. heres one last photo to show another size comparison... man its cool.





i vaguely remember playing this game when i was younger. there were so many old mac games that i loose track. at any rate i came across this while browsing through my regular sites and thought i would share. its a simple game that you maneuver a paper airplane through various environments with out running into obstacles. hope you enjoy!

heres a link to the program (there are all sorts of various versions including mac osx and windows)